Monday, May 14, 2012

Extradionarily Ordinary

I sat looking at the sky last night from the official navigator's seat of the van (aka passenger seat) heading home after the day spent at my parents house.  It was stunning.  Streams of thin clouds floating effortlessly on the horizon as the setting sun sprayed beautiful pastels.  I smile. Sigh. 3/4 of my kids already sound asleep in their car seats.  Heads tilted back, mouths slightly ajar.  I wonder what they are dreaming of?  Are the dreaming of the afternoon spent barreling down hill in the wagon?  Or maybe the ice cream sundae's we made?  Perhaps of the hot dogs that we cooked on the open fire?

Before getting out of bed on Mother's Day, I praise the Lord that I was even able to celebrate it at all.  And then I decided that I would serve my children.  For the last 7 years Mother's Day has been somewhat miserable as no one could live up to the expectations of how I felt I should be treated...the red carpet, constant doting on me, no dishes, no food prep...and while we are at it, why don't I stay in bed the whole day?  And a tiara, I want a tiara.

Galatians 5:13 
For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.

It was miserable.  I was demanding.  So this year I decided that I was going to serve my kiddos, joyfully!  I woke up and was so excited to get out of bed to make muffins for us before we headed to church.  My dear husband came quickly out to the kitchen to see what was up, fearful that he had failed yet again on another Mother's Day.  I smiled at him and I could see the relief streak across his face.  I was good, had the kitchen under control!  My Mum and I had decided to just eat dinner at her house after church rather than going out to eat.  The day was beautiful.  We watched as my Dad and Sam worked on building a covered section of their back deck.  We watched the kids play.  We worked on flower beds.  Cooked hot dogs and marshmallows on the fire.

Colossians 3:23-24
 Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving the Lord Christ.

The drive back from my parents house left me bursting at the at the seams.  Joy was overflowing from my heart.  The day was delightful in every way.  I found such joy in just being with my family rather than expectations that were difficult to fill.

God is so good.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

Just an Ordinary Mother's Day

I nurse the baby.  In my arms, he doesn't seem so much like a baby now.  Just a few months ago he would curl up in my crissed-crossed legs, in my lap, barely there.  Eyes closed, eating.  Now, he stares at me, his legs spilling out of my lap and my arm tires when he decides to take his sweet time. 

His eyes lock in on my mine, and I smile.  Popping off, he smiles back.  I tell him how sweet he is and that I love him.  A year ago, I had no idea he would be joining our family.  And here he is, snuggled in my lap.  He squirms with a smile that is so much says "I love you too, Momma". 

I dream of a Mother's Day break.  I dream of a special day where I am treated like a queen and all is right in the world.  My home is perfectly organized.  And clean.  And not cluttered.  And my kids are all perfectly behaved. 

Then, I drift back to reality.  I hear my boys giggling as they work together to master another level on the Wii.  I look on the sofa to see my daughter tucked under Daddy's arm while he sleeps.  And I look down at my baby, with his eyes still locked on mine.

I've been missing it.  I am treated like a queen.
                                    ...I have 3 princes and 1 princess
I have a messy house...
           ....because children live here.  Children play here.  Children dream here.

I've been missing that my life is a dream.  I get to celebrate Mother's Day this year.  I get my priorities reorganized in my head...  I don't need a special day.  I want Mother's Day to be normal.  I want messy kids because they have been playing in the mud and outside running.  Because they can run.  I want an unorganized house because I walk over toys and step on legos and vacuum up crayons.  My children all have wildly different personalities...and unfortunately their 'not desired' behavior is most like their Momma's.

So, I'm so happy to celebrate my very ordinary mother's day tomorrow.  I am blessed listening to my husband tuck the kiddos in bed...little feet running across the floor with the occasional giggling.

Thank You, Lord.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

The count down is on.

The count down is on.  The fear is rising.  Doubt threatens to punch me in the gut.

"You can't do it."

"You are going to fail."

I might.  Will I?  Can I?  Fail.  These thoughts torment me as they bounce around in my head.  My own self doubt.

Then I realize that all these thoughts are false.


I serve a Lord who is so much bigger than thoughts of self doubt that hang out in my mind looking for any weak moment to jump on the band wagon to cheer me down a spiraling slide of "I can' do this".

I choose to stop.  I choose to realize the false of my self doubt.

Standing in the promises of the King.  Trusting that He will equip me with the skills I need to fulfill the plan he has laid out me (Romans 8:28).

Every time I say I can' speaks against what God can and what He will do.

It isn't about me.  This journey isn't about me.  It is about Christ.  I am just the vessel for His work.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

A Special Gem

Sometimes I feel a little crazy...ok a lot of the time I feel crazy.  And there are times when I'm out in public and the things that people say to someone with four kids in tow can lead one to believe they belong in the circus.  Even when I think I'm rocking the trip people will still say come up with the craziest comments!

Yes, my hands are full but I'd rather them be full than empty.

I've been working hard to count my blessings.  Yes, that doesn't sound very thankful, I know.  Sometimes the laundry piles are too much to bare.  The constant need to kick meals out of my kitchen is overwhelming.  The lessons to be taught seem daunting.  The hurricane that seems to blow through my house multiple times a day.

I am well aware that my hands are full.

I am also well aware that these days seem to fly by, even faster than the meals that I make are eaten.

I sat with a long time friend chatting this weekend about life and how God is moving.  When we met she had 2 children while I had none.  And then, now, we sat while 6 were outside playing together and one snuggled in my lap.  We marveled at how much life had changed in the last 10 years.  We rejoiced as we looked at what God has brought us through.  It was encouraging as we talked about what God is doing in our lives TODAY.  I left feeling SO encouraged and a lot less crazy.

Having a friend to rejoice and cry with and a friend to hold you accountable is so important.  Someone to really drive you deeper in your relationship with Christ.  Friendships keep the focus off of us and if they are Christ-centered, will keep our focus on God.  That is the key to wonderful friendships!  Of course, I'd love a friend to fluff me up.  Tell me I'm Queen of the mountain.  A friend to boast about how awesome I am.  Yes, that would be lovely...but is that what I need?  No, I do that quite wonderfully myself.  My sinful nature tells me to take care of ME and forget everyone else, I don't need any help in that area.  I do, however, need all the help I can get to keep my focus on the Heavenly Father.  I need someone to help me keep my eyes and concern off myself and keep looking at Jesus.  When my focus is on the Lord is when I find that I can pour my concern and love out on others, through Christ.

Yes, friends are a special gem.  A special gem requires special care.  Oh how precious they are!  They take the sting out of crazy and keep me focused on what matters on this side of Heaven!